Court clerk wins grant for office expansion

The East Feliciana Parish Police Jury gave Clerk of Court David Dart permission Tuesday to begin construction of an addition to his office that will be funded through a private grant.

Dart said the Irene W. and C.B. Pennington Foundation awarded his office a $200,000 grant, which he said should be enough to complete the addition he has planned.

He credited parish residents Daryl Pennington and Ann Reiley Jones for securing the foundation’s grant.

The Police Jury is responsible for providing office space for the clerk, but Dart said he does not think the jury will have to put up any money for an addition to the back of his office, which is across the street from the parish courthouse.

“We’re in dire need of more space. In about 16 months, we’ll be out of room,” Dart said.

Other topics before the jury included:

EXPLOSION AFTERMATH: Jurors agreed to draft some type of cooperative endeavor agreement with the town of Slaughter to allow the jury to supply two 36-inch culverts to replace culverts that the state Department of Environmental Quality has ordered the town to remove because they are contaminated with hazardous materials.

The culverts are beneath a street bordering the former Monolyte Laboratories plant, which exploded and burned on Nov. 19. Juror Chris Hall said the company has declared bankruptcy, leaving the town to foot the bill for reopening the street.

“They’re being left with the burden of somebody else’s mess,” Hall said.

ROAD STUDY: Jurors approved a $14,897 study of parish roads by the Forte and Tablada engineering firm as the first step in developing a plan for rehabilitating some parish roads.

Parish Manager Glen Kent said the firm also will seek grants for parish roadwork.